Training Day (2001)
March 12, 2021 11:11 PM - Subscribe

A rookie cop spends his first day as a Los Angeles narcotics officer with a rogue detective who isn't what he appears to be. The Antoine Fuqua crime drama netted Denzel Washington an Academy Award win while Ethan Hawke earned a nomination. Now streaming on Netflix.
posted by chrchr (5 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
One may object to Alonzo Harris the character, what he represents both in his world and as a movie character, but Denzel brings it one hundred percent. Has Denzel played other roles over the years where he was as deserving a Best Actor Oscar? Yes, absolutely. Does he deserve here? Yes.

Ethan Hawke does great work as Jake the young cop. He is appropriately nervous and unsure of himself when he needs to be, yet determined when things start to go bad.

Scott Glenn and the other supporting players are all great, especially the Three Wise Men.

Antoine Fuqua captures LA. It rains, it's sunny, it rains some more. And that LA sun just keeps on keeping on until boom, it's dark.

Any movie that uses that cafe in LA is not a bad movie.
posted by Fukiyama at 6:47 AM on March 13, 2021 [5 favorites]

It had been long enough since I first saw this that I had forgotten much of the plot - and was surprised that the rookie wasn't undercover IA or something.

Washington and Hawke are spectacular in this. Despite being 31 when this was released, Hawke played the upstanding but ambitious rookie to the hilt.

Enjoyed the contrast between the low key menace of "the wise men" (an inside joke re: wiseguys?) and the toxic performative masculinity radiating from everyone else.

Along with the climate, I really liked seeing the people - they feel like they have lives and aren't just set dressing.

Was that the same cafe as 'Se7en'?

While the individual plot points and the action and acting were entertaining as all get out, the overall narrative feels contrived. But still, great movie. Reminded me to watch another Washington/ Hawke collaboration. (edit: also directed by Antoine Fuqua)
posted by porpoise at 1:55 PM on March 13, 2021

Was that the same cafe as 'Se7en'?

posted by Fukiyama at 3:19 PM on March 13, 2021

My favorite thing about Training Day is the scene in the tub. I did not see a way out when I first watched it and was thrilled with screenwriter David Ayer's exit. Masterful screenwriting.

I'm a little drunk so may be remembering this wrong but I believe Ayer became a screenwriter because he was living in LA and working as a cable guy and was installing a sat dish or something at Shane Black's house and he asked, "What do you do to get a house like this?" and Black told him. Ayer told him a bit of his life story and Black told him to start writing.
posted by dobbs at 3:48 PM on March 14, 2021 [1 favorite]

i watch this as an unofficial trilogy with:

1. Training Day (In my head canon Alonso gets shot but survives and has to disappear)
2. Safe House (changed his name and with his street smarts and new training had a brilliant black ops CIA career)
3. The Equalizer (again survived and now retired hoping to make the world a better place post CIA)
posted by alchemist at 12:02 PM on March 15, 2021

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